Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 07 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The history of reproductive politics in the United States incorporates several centuries of struggle and resistance and virtually no periods of quiescence. The state and other institutions have frequently clashed within and against each other and with girls and women, over who has primary power to govern female sexuality, fertility, and maternity: institutions, or women themselves. These struggles have always been racialized. From the eighteenth century forward, authorities have promulgated laws and public policies embedding population-control aims, investing some groups with greater reproductive value than others. In the modern era, “choice” emerged as the mark of reproductive freedom, chiefly defined as the right to limit and terminate pregnancy. More recently, “reproductive justice” contends that all people have the human right to be a parent; to forgo parenting; and to access the resources required to exercise the first two rights with dignity and safety.

Keywords: reproductive justice, population control, human rights, race, motherhood, sexuality, eugenics

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.